MENTOR, Ohio — An Ohio pizza delivery driver was moved to tears by a spontaneous act of kindness by a church congregation, and the emotional video of the man telling his story is spreading holiday cheer across the world.
Jeff Louis, 22, makes his living delivering pies for Gionino's Pizzeria in Mentor, Ohio, according to ABC News. But he's also been battling a long prescription drug addiction that resurfaced last month.
"Last year, he decided to seek help, and he was doing good up until around November when he relapsed a bit," Louis' father, Jim, told ABC.
Shortly after the relapse, Louis was sent to deliver eight pizzas to the Life Point Church. When he pulled up to the church, several members of the congregation approached his car, pulled out a pizza and asked him to bring it up to the pastor on stage.
"I was weirded out," Louis explained in the selfie video that he posted to YouTube, which now has more than 3.4 million views.
He followed the people into the church and up onto the stage, where Pastor Ken Wright was waiting to surprise him with $100. The church received record-setting donations in September, and Wright had decided to pass along some of that generosity to the person who delivered the pizza that day, according to ABC.
But then Wright had a spontaneous thought: Why limit the tip to just $100?
"I asked the congregation if anyone else wanted to tip, and people just started lining up, one right after the other, and he just started to break down," Wright said.
Louis was shocked.
"This whole church came up and gave me over $700 for a tip," he says through tears. "It's just truly amazing. I've been having such a hard time lately, just struggling to stay clean and everything, and I'm just trying to get my life back. It just really truly amazes me that people who don't even know me wanted to help me out that much."
Louis said he's been blown away by the response his story has received. Shortly after he posted the video, a California rehabilitation center offered to treat him for free, ABC reports. The YouTube post has thousands of uplifting comments and messages of encouragement.
"I don't think that tip was just a coincidence," Jim Louis said. "I think it was meant to happen."